‘Vane’, by Brian Turner

Nostalgia’s a weather vane
that veers from fact to fiction,
imaginary to real, what’s

perceived as such; and as such
it’s the big if only linked
to the sad what if? It’s

what you never stop asking,
what splinters happiness,
hobbles the wish to be

oh so precise, robust, explicit.


  1. Feeling nostalgic Jason?
    I think there’s worse feelings. Like being trapped in a virtual world. What do you reckon?


  2. Nostalgic? Not at all Pam. I find that nostalgia requires a level of alcohol unknown to me before lunchtime (which was around when I posted the poem). Speaking of nostalgia though, I remember Brueggemann once speaking (in The Word Militant: Preaching a Decentering Word) of the way that our memory may be enmeshed in a nostalgic longing for normalcy and ‘the good old days’ when life was simple and agrarian, settled, and well-ordered. That nostalgia, he said, is all intertwined with evangelical memory, so that the nostalgia has a vague religious feeling about it. We need to sort out the normative memory from this other vague yearning.


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